UW-Whitewater women advance to second round of NCAA Tournament - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UW-Whitewater women advance to second round of NCAA Tournament

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (UW-Whitewater Athletics) -- The UW-Whitewater women's basketball team shot 10-12 from the free throw line down the stretch to defeat Concordia, 79-72, and advance to the second round of the NCAA tournament on Friday. With the win, head coach Keri Carollo earns her 230th career victory to become the winningest coach in school history. The Warhawks will face the winner of St. Thomas and Loras at 7 pm on Saturday.
Five players were in double figures for UW-W with Mary Merg (Greendale/Greendale) leading the way with 16 while Katie Burton (Crystal Lake, IL/Crystal Lake Sourth) added 14. Amy Mandrell (Forsyth, IL/Maroa-Forsyth) and Kristen Ruchti (Brodhead/Brodhead) both scored 12 and Kaitlyn Thill (Belgium/Ozaukee) added 11. The Warhawks shot 41% from the field and were able to turn the Cobbers' 24 turnovers into 24 points. CC shot 46% from the field and was 7-19 from behind the arc.
The game was close throughout the first half, with the Warhawks largest lead of six coming with 7:55 left in the half and the Cobbers' largest lead of five coming at the 14:04 mark. Concordia held the advantage from the field, shooting 54% to UW-W's 46%. CC hit 6-11 from downtown to Whitewater's 3-10.
In the opening period, Mandrell was 4-6 for 10 points with five rebounds and Burton was 2-2 from behind the arc for nine points to lead the Warhawks. Alley Fisher and Erin Januschka led the Cobbers with 12 points each and give Concordia a 43-40 lead going into the locker room.
Concordia was able to extend its lead to nine, 52-43, in the opening minutes of the second half, but Thill kept the Warhawks in the game by leading an 8-0 run to tie the game at 54-54 with 11:34 left and then take a three-point lead, 58-55, halfway through the period.
After the Cobbers retook the lead by two, 64-62, with 4:36 to play, Ruchti drove the lane then passed off to Reilly Stewart(Wheaton, IL/Wheaton North) in the corner who nailed a three to give UW-W a one point advantage with just over four minutes left. Whitewater went 10-12 from the charity stripe down the stretch to hold Concordia at bay and advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 79-72 win.
UW-Whitewater will face the winner of the Loras and St. Thomas game in St. Paul, MN on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.

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